Engaging Remote Workers: Research Reveals Remote Workers Overwhelmingly Want Rewards and Incentives from Employers

Prepaid and gift cards are the number one way employees want employers to engage with them while working virtually

PLEASANTON, Calif., April 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Today, global branded payments provider Blackhawk Network released new research1 that found that respondents who currently work at home or have worked from home in the last year prefer their employers engage them via rewards and incentives—citing these efforts as an effective way to drive loyalty. The vast majority of respondents (84%) reported prepaid and gift cards as the incentive they most want to receive.

“Now more than ever, employers are looking for ways to engage, encourage and support their employees who work virtually—especially those who have not worked remotely before. Prepaid and gift cards can help make that happen,” said Theresa McEndree, vice president of marketing at Blackhawk Network. “We have seen companies really embracing creative ways to reward and engage with their employees; dining delivery egift cards for a virtual lunch, meal delivery or athletic egift card to maintain a wellness mindset or simply a prepaid card to offset any unforeseen financial impact. Recognizing a job well done, encouraging productivity during uncertain times and strengthening personal connections with remote workers can pay dividends almost immediately and long into the future.”

The new research surveyed working age Americans on how they want their employers to engage them when working remotely, and provides valuable insights employers can apply now and in the future. Among the top findings:

Nearly three-quarters of Americans are currently or have previously worked from home. Among those surveyed, 71% reported currently working from home or doing so in the past year. The U.S. workforce is becoming more active online and spread out geographically; learning how to engage employees where they are will become increasingly important to company performance.

Rewards and incentives are powerful remote engagement tools. Survey respondents were asked how they wanted their employers to engage them when they worked remotely. The number one choice was to receive rewards and incentives—beating out online chats, virtual luncheons and video conference meetings. Nearly three-quarters (74%) of those surveyed said it is important to receive rewards from their employer. Creating rewards and incentives programs can lay a solid foundation for engaging employees the way they want and in a way that effectively encourages regular touchpoints.

Prepaid and gift cards are hands-down favorite rewards. When asked which incentive they would like to receive from an employer, 84% of respondents preferred prepaid and gift cards. There was a near-even split between those that preferred physical cards (52%) and digital cards (48%)—demonstrating the need for organizations to consider a mix of the two when sending to employees working virtually.

Rewards drive loyalty. When asked whether receiving a reward from their employer would increase their loyalty to a company, 84% of survey respondents agreed. Prepaid and gift cards are coveted rewards that resonate with virtual employees on a personal level—helping drive loyalty. Separate research2 found that three-quarters of respondents think of gift cards as an opportunity to treat themselves and the majority of respondents would be encouraged to work harder when receiving gift card rewards. By offering the right rewards, employers can positively influence behaviors that directly contribute to the bottom line.

Blackhawk Network can deliver gift cards and prepaid reward cards, in digital and physical formats, direct to recipients or in bulk to multiple locations through Omnicard.com.

About Blackhawk Network
Blackhawk Network delivers branded payment solutions through the prepaid products, technologies and network that connect brands and people. We collaborate with our partners to innovate, translating market trends in branded payments to increase reach, loyalty and revenue. Serving more than 26 countries, we reliably execute security-minded solutions worldwide. Join us as we shape the future of global branded payments.

1 The “Receiving Incentives and Rewards from Your Employer” study was an internet-based study conducted by SurveyMonkey on behalf of Blackhawk Network between March 24–25, 2020. The sample size included 1,718 working U.S. employees ages 18–60.

2 “Gift Card State of the Union” is an online survey conducted by Murphy Research on behalf of Blackhawk Network between February 4–12, 2019. The sample size of 10,126 U.S. consumers was comprised of respondents between the ages of 18–75.